Book Patch testing on the website of the European Society of Contact Dermatitis

In mid-2020 I came up with the idea to offer the digital files of my book Patch Testing, 4th edition, to the European Society of Contact Dermatitis and the American Contact Dermatitis Society, the two international scientific societies mainly focusing on contact allergies and contact dermatitis. Book sales were already declining considerably at that time and I knew it would fall even further. By the way: that was and is not a problem for me and I actually think it's fine. I am not financially dependent on it and, moreover, sending the books is always a hassle. In fact, I think I will pull the plug on acdegroot publishing at the end of this year (2022) and therefore stop book sales. I still have about 280 books left, but I could, for example, hand them out for free to participants of a conference of the Dutch Society for Dermatology and Venereology.  UPDATE: acdegroot publishing was terminated on October 1, 2022.

My current focus and goal is that as many dermatologists and their patients as possible can benefit from all the time and effort I have put into this project over the past 38 years, from 1984 when I began writing the first edition of the book. It has personally brought me a lot, namely a solid reputation among and appreciation of dermatologists and other specialists interested in contact allergy.

Well, how do I achieve that, as many people as possible benefitting from my work? One possibility is to make the book digitally available to the group of dermatologists interested in contact allergy. Many of them are members of the European Society of Contact Dermatitis (ESCD), the American Contact Dermatitis Society (ACDS), or both organizations. The ESCD has about 320 members and the ACDS about 2,500. The decision was made quickly and in June 2020 I contacted the ESCD and in December 2020 (I don't remember why I waited half a year) the ACDS. I will tell you how things went with the European association below; you can read how my contacts with the Americans went (worth reading) here.

Some room for improvement 

In June 2020 I contacted the President of the European Society of Contact Dermatitis and made him the offer for the digital files of Patch testing for the website. He thanked me kindly and said he would deal with it. It then took more than a year and a half before my offer was accepted (not the fault of the then President, I want to emphasize). I'm not going to explain how this all went, let me just say that  it didn't deserve a beauty award. In any case: in January 2022 I received a message that the ESCD would post the book on the website. That was done quickly afterwards, because I had finished the fifth edition and John the website builder and I had already gone through the same process at the American Contact Dermatitis Society, where the book was already on the website for some time.

Five months later, in June 2022, my friend Thomas Rustemeyer, professor of Occupational dermatology in Amsterdam, informed me that, at a conference in Amsterdam, the Executive Committee of the ESCD had proposed to the General Assembly to appoint me an honorary member of the ESCD , which proposal was passed unanimously. My offer for the book on the website was one of the reasons for this. Now I am an honorary member of both the ESCD and the ACDS! I will always be grateful to Thomas for his initiative and to the members of the Executive Committee. All is well that ends well.......

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